China has not yet formally applied to join the bank, but has expressed interest in membership, an EBRD spokesperson said in an emailed statement to Out-Law.com.
"China is requesting membership and status as a shareholder, not as a recipient of EBRD finance. The EBRD has made clear that it is prepared to work with eligible Chinese companies on joint projects that fulfil the EBRD’s criteria for investment," the EBRD statement said.
"The EBRD’s existing shareholders would have to approve any formal request to become a shareholder," the statement said.
The EBRD was established in 1991 to help build a new, post-Cold War era in Central and Eastern Europe, the bank said.
It is currently active in more than 30 countries from central Europe to central Asia and the southern and eastern Mediterranean, the EBRD said.
The EBRD said in June that it aims to work with the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to jointly fund large infrastructure. EBRD president Sir Suma Chakrabarti said at the time that the combined strength of both organisations could allow them to take on much larger projects.